If you need to replace all of your teeth or just a few teeth, your dentist may suggest full or partial dentures. Removable dentures can be a convenient way to restore the appearance and function of missing teeth, but they can take some getting used to.
Talking to you dentist should give you an idea of what to expect with dentures and whether they are the right choice for you.
Most people are clinically suitable for dentures, as denture fitting doesn't usually involve surgery unless you're having teeth extracted. However, losing teeth and having them replaced can be a difficult experience for some people, and may require emotional preparation. You should talk to your dentist if you have any concerns so they can try to address these and put your mind at ease.
If you're not sure about dentures, your dentist may discuss alternative treatments. Depending on your individual needs and circumstances, these may include full arch dental implants as a more permanent solution for replacing all of your teeth or a dental bridge if you only need to replace a few teeth.
Dentures can sometimes feel sore at first, although this usually goes away in a day or two.
If you still feel pain after this time, or you experience other side-effects such as swelling or bleeding gums, your dentures may need to be adjusted or there could be another problem. Make an appointment with your dentist as soon as possible.
Your dentist may advise that you eat softer foods for a few weeks after your dentures are fitted, as this can make it easier to get used to how they feel. You could also try cutting food into smaller pieces, chewing more slowly and avoiding chewy or sticky foods, as these can dislodge dentures.
Eating with dentures can feel strange at first, as your mouth adjusts to how the dentures feel and move. You should get used to this before long and learn how to stop dentures moving in your mouth.
Dentures are normally removed at night, as this gives the mouth a chance to rest. However, some people prefer to continue wearing their dentures while sleeping, and this could help you to get used to how they feel. Your dentist can discuss what's best for you.
It can take time to feel comfortable wearing dentures, especially with how they feel in your mouth and if they affect how you talk and eat. Most people get used to dentures within a few weeks, after the facial muscles have relaxed and eating with dentures has become more familiar.
You should visit your dentist for follow-up appointments after dentures are fitted so they can make any adjustments needed or give you advice.
Just like teeth, dentures need to be cleaned every day to remove leftover food and plaque, although you should use plain water or a denture cleaner and not toothpaste. It's still important to brush your gums, tongue and any teeth you have remaining with fluoride toothpaste to support good oral hygiene and avoid problems such as gum disease.
It's also important to keep up with your regular dental check-ups, giving your dentist the chance to check your oral health and the condition of your dentures. If your dentures get damaged or wear down over time, your dentist may offer denture repairs or relines rather than having to replace the denture.
Contact our friendly team at Face Value Dental to arrange an appointment with our Brisbane dentists. We'll give you all the information you need about dentures and other options to replace missing teeth so you can make a fully informed decision.
Queensland Government. Dentures [Online] 2017 [Accessed May 2019] Available from: http://conditions.health.qld.gov.au/HealthCondition/condition/18/176/36/dentures
Better Health Channel. Dentures [Online] 2018 [Accessed May 2019] Available from: https://www.betterhealth.vic.gov.au/health/conditionsandtreatments/dentures
Healthdirect. Dental implant [Online] 2017 [Accessed May 2019] Available from: https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/dental-implant